Posts Tagged ‘Elsu’

Update: Both horses ran at the Cambridge track last night, after elect To Go made it into a much more suitable field in the Waikato meeting that was brought back from Sunday to thursday in a move to help find a space for the flooded out Forbury Park meeting. Elect To Go ran an exciting 2nd after being awkwardly placed 4 back on the inside, coming with an eyecatching run wide. View video here. Souvenir Glory had even less luck in the running, having to drop back from the 7 draw and just ran around nicely at the back of the field, and will be ready for next time.

Original blog:

The last month or so has been really enjoyable with a range of horses we have either bred or bought as weanlings showing up at the track.

Kym’s Elsu mare Souvenir Glory – 2nd at Cambridge. Thanks to a nice drive from Kyle Marshall she got handy on the pace, and ran home very well wider out. It was a gutsy effort. She starts again this Thursday at Cambridge. It was an Elsu quinella. Just an interesting by-note: The talented 2yo Emily blunt, a Rock N Roll Heaven filly bred and owned by Cambridge breeder Pat Laboyrie, has had an eye-catching second and then win at the Nelson meeting lately – in its first two starts. She’s by Pat’s nice 6-win Elsu mare Matai Mies. Nothing wrong with those good Elsu mares!

Elect To Go – 2-length win at the workouts at Pukekohe by the Gotta Go Collect x Innsbruck weanling Kym and I bought from the Alabar draft at the 2011 weanling sale. Never been pushed along when young, although she did qualify as an early 3yo with Kym as trainer. We’ve sent her to Geoff Small now to see what she’s got, and it looks like she’s got enough to be competitive. She is the half sister to mare Sovereign Faith, who has done a good job here and over in Australia (11 wins from 51 starts lifetime, $72,234). She’s nominated for the first race at Alexandra Park this Friday, but her draw of 7 is a head-scratcher for trainer Geoff in a tough field for a maiden.

In the trot qualifier trial at Pukekohe on the same day, Angus Fogg (Angus Hall x Sun Isa) qualified comfortably for trainer Derek Balle. A gorgeous looking big gelding, he’ll be another we will follow with as much passion and interest as the current owners! Read about him here and his pedigree here. Sun Isa is currently in foal to Angus Hall.

In North America we continue to follow the adventures of Destination Moon (Grinfromeartoear x Zenterfold) and Driving The Dragon (Sutter Hanover x Shark Alert), the latter, like Souvenir Glory and Elect To Go, was a purchase from the Alabar draft at weanling sales. Both continue to put their hooves in the till.



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A very proud day – Kym’s first win at Alexandra Park as a trainer, with the 5yo Elsu mare she also owns.

We know her as “Georgie” but her racing name is Souvenir Glory. Lightly raced – this is just her 18th start over 3 seasons, she has been an important part of Kym’s learning curve as a trainer. Her dam is Holmes Hanover mare Tra De Mur, now retired from breeding, and none of her foals have turned out to be stars. However what Souvenir Glory brings to the table is a desire to give all she can, to compete and do her best each time. She’s a gutsy little mare, with real character. Like many of the Elsus (and there were three Elsu winners at Thames Racing Club meeting at Alexandra Park today) she is a genuine “bread and butter” horse – and this time there was a bit of jam with the bread and butter!

Congratulations Kym! Tip o’ the hat to driver Kyle Marshall! Apples tomorrow for Georgie!

Souvenir Glory

Souvenir Glory winning at the 3 May Thames Racing Club meeting at Alexandra Park.  Photo Bee Pears

Kym picked her out at the Alabar Weanling Inspection in 2010, and bought her at the PGG Wrightson Broodmare and All Aged Sale a couple of weeks later.

(Just a reminder – the same Parade and Sale sequence is coming up on Sunday 10 May with the Alabar open day inspection of their weanling draft, followed by the PGG Wrightson Autumn Weanling and All Aged Sale on Wednesday 20 May at Karaka. A great chance to see a number of foals from a wide range of sires and maybe pick out a bargain. There is a similar sale in Christchurch on 29 May.)

Home straight Souvenir Glory in lead

Home straight with Souvenir Glory in lead.  Photo Bee Pears

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If you are still debating whether to put your Elsu mare in foal, take heart.

Yesterday at Forbury Park the win by Jack Black (Mach Three-Black And Royal, bred by Michelle Carson) gave Elsu his first winning credit as a damsire. It wasn’t in a super time or by 10 lengths, but it was very comfortable and hinted of more to come. First start and it’s a nice win. You can’t do better than that.

Jack Black’s dam is an Elsu mare from a nice family  – and he was a Sales yearling in 2012 that caught my attention for that very reason. Here’s the blog I wrote at that time.  

There are only 4 registered foals aged 3 in New Zealand with Elsu as their damsire, and Black And Royal’s foal is the only colt (actually a gelding). Two of the filly foals from Elsu mares have qualified: Donegal Boyd Creek (Jereme’s Jet – Boyd’s Creek – that’s the Kahu Del family that produces some outstanding types like Lyall Creek and Harnett’s Creek) and Ohoka Royal (Ohoka Arizona – Ella Bea Royal). In both cases they are the mare’s first foals.

Looking down the list of what Elsu dams are producing, there is plenty to like about their prospects. There are just 17 registered foals listed, and overall the sires chosen are very commercial ones, including Christian Cullen (a sister to Jack Black), Bettor’s Delight, Rock N Roll Heaven, Shadow Play and Mach Three.

Among those with Elsu as their damsire are 6 win mare Matai Mies which breeder Pat Laboyrie put to Rock N Roll Heaven – I’ve seen the resulting yearling filly called Emily Blunt and she is a lovely type.

Brian West of Studholme Bloodstock is breeding from his Elsu mare The Actress, 2 wins and from his very nice Stage Talent family (dam of Slippery Mckenzie, About Ambition, Collectable). The yearling colt has been named The Actor.

Graham and Sue Henley of Alabar NZ are breeding their Elsu mare Esha – to Shadow Play for a now 2yo colt called Playingintheshadows who is with Lance Hanrahan, and now a filly by Santanna Blue Chip called Machineguns N Gems.

You can check out the details on the HRNZ website Info Horse database.

One interesting one is the Elsu mare Suzen Star who is out of Zenola Star and so a half sister to my own Zenterfold.  That makes her 2 x 3 to New York Motoring and 3 x 3 to Zenover. It’s close to inbreeding, and something Geoff and Aria Small also tried with Zenterfold when they put her to Elsu – in that case the resulting foal was a lovely big type who qualified but was retired, after being given plenty of time to develop, with reoccurring soreness, and seemed to lack the real element of speed required for racing.

The Henley’s leased Suzen Star to breed her to Grinfromeartoear, and the resulting filly (now named Yolo) was sold through the PGG Wrightson Autumn Weanling and All Aged Sale in May this year for just $3500 to the Blakemores. It will be interesting to keep an eye out on that one. The cross with Grin is one I have tried of course with Zenterfold to good success.

Elsu is a sire that has not left those outstanding racehorses required to really make him commercial. However he has gained respect from the smaller owners and trainers as a sire of horses that can become good “bread and butter” horses, affordable, honest and competitive, accumulating their wins and places over time rather than a flash in the pan. So he’s always thereabouts on the sires stats tables.

His real legacy, given the lovely maternal line he comes from – the engine room, may well be as a damsire especially when his mares are given a real chance with quality sires that can inject some speed into the progeny. Jack Black is a great example of that.

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Sharing these photos I took, with a word or two that sums up what these sires expressed as they paraded at Alabar on Sunday.

And guess what? I was lucky enough to draw the free service to Gotta Go Cullen/Great Success/Elsu – more of that later.

(We missed Elsu who paraded first, but have included a photo I took of him in a parade 2012)

Art Official – lovely conformation, very correct

Art Offical Alabar 2013

Art Offical – Alabar 2013

Auckland Reactor – athletic and supple

Auckland Reactor Alabar 2013

Auckland Reactor –  Alabar 2013

Big Jim – height and reach

Big Jim Alabar 2013

Big Jim – Alabar 2013

Majestic Son – powerful and lithe

Majestic Son alabar 2013

Majestic Son -Alabar 2013

Great Success – strong and square

Great Success - Alabar 2013

Great Success – Alabar 2013

Gotta Go Cullect – on-his-toes show-off with great conformation

Gotta Go Cullect - Alabar 2013

Gotta Go Cullect – Alabar 2013

Mach Three – stunningly handsome professional

Mach Three - Alabar 2013

Mach Three – Alabar 2013

Elsu – classic character

Elsu - Alabar 2012

Elsu – Alabar 2012

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In my latest article in Breeding Matters I wrote about some of the relatively new sires that are making an early appearance as damsires at the 2012 NZ yearling sales:

Mach Three (Lots 112, 129, 131, 291 at Christchurch)
Bettor’s Delight (Lots 132 and 283 at Christchurch
Courage Under Fire (Lots 14 and 101 at Karaka) 
McArdle (Lot 140 at Christchurch)
Washington VC (Lots 24, 49, 169 and 323 at Christchurch) 
Elsu (Lot 17 at Christchurch)
Western Terror (Lot 68 Karaka)

I’d like to have a look at some of these in a bit more detail over the next few blogs, because it’s interesting when breeders move into new territory.

None of the Mach Three, McArdle, Courage Under Fire, Bettor’s Delight, and Elsu mares are successful racehorses retired with a significant reputations or wins to their name. Only two (by Courage Under Fire and McArdle) won a race. That’s no surprise. Untried or lightly raced dams are common in the catalogue, and it just means the yearling is relying more on other factors than their mum’s success – factors such as the family reputation, individual type, and of course the popularity of his damsire and the selected sire with trainers and buyers.

Besides, the top performing fillies and mares from these sires are still doing the business on the track or were only recently retired to stud, and they will start appearing at future sales.

Featuring : Lot 17 Christchurch, Jack Black

 – a Mach Three yearling from Elsu mare “Black And Royal” (2006).

This is Elsu’s first appearance in the yearling sales catalogue as a damsire. (Correct me if I’m wrong!)

This yearling comes from the Spirit Of Venus family which produces really good horses now and then. The black type on the page is impressive, but the odds are intriguing. Spirit Of Venus had 15 foals for 4 winners (Nketia and Ciccio Star being the standouts, with Whata Spirit getting 4 wins and the only other winner was her second foal Pitman, a colt by Midshipman who managed only 1 win.)

While the Yarndleys bred most of Spirit Of Venus’ foals, Michelle Carson bought the mare when she was older and proving harder to get in foal, and chose Elsu (who was standing in his first season) because he was “supremely fertile”. She recalls being on the spot early in the morning, watching him being collected, then took the fresh semen and “drove like a maniac back home” where the vet was on standby.

The result was a gorgeous black filly with white markings, which she named Black And Royal. Mainly due to timing and resources, the mare is genuinely untried as a racehorse. There were delays and “in the end I thought I might as well start breeding from her,” Michelle Carson says.

The Elsu-Spirit of Venus cross means Black And Royal has a heap of excellent old New Zealand bloodlines with no double ups until well back in its pedigree, when the maternal family of Elsu brings in U.Scott and Spinster (and those are two excellent double ups to have on board in combination), so it’s an old fashioned but quality foundation for a modern broodmare.

Matching the mare with Mach Three was less for pedigree reasons, Michelle says, and more because she loves the Mach Threes – “They are beautifully gaited, and have a long, reaching stride,” she says. She was involved with Mach Of A Man, a very promising juvenile whose career was curtailed by bad luck and injury.

Michelle sold Jack Black as a weanling, because of having too many to raise and prepare on her own. Allan Clark for Highview Standardbred Ltd in Riverton was the buyer. He says Mach Threes can sometimes be plain types of yearlings, but Elsu has added type. He describes the yearling as a lovely colt, almost black, not a big type but a strong barrel and “quarters like an Angus bull”. A real two year old type.

Black And Royal’s next foal is by Christian Cullen.

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